Before the White Peaks: A Gnoman March #writephoto

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Before the White Peaks: A Gnoman March

(206 Words)

“Are ye sure ’tis this way, Shane?”

“Aye, I’m sure. Keep up with me. Don’t drag your feet.”

There were five gnomes, the tallest in the lead and the smallest at the rear. It was the second who paused, scratching his head.

“Why mustn’t I be dragging my feet now, Shane?”

“Because,” said the first, “this marshy land is cursed. If any of us gets the mud from this marsh on the toes of their shoes—be ye warned—none of us will leave.”

The three smaller gnomes looked alarmed. The second was compelled to reassure them.

“But isn’t it the good Queen Aibreann who will save us, then?”

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The Second Rainbow

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The Second Rainbow (128 Words)

Annie saw the two rainbows on her way home from school and knew what she had to do.

She ran as fast as she could to get to the end of one. She got there just as soon as it was going away.

“Oh no!” she said. “Don’t go! I need you!”

“What do you need me for?” asked the rainbow.

Annie hadn’t expected it to answer. “I want a pot of gold,” she said.

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Magic Gold

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Magic Gold (154 Words)

She sat braiding her hair. In the morning light the strands shone rusty brown. The young woman’s agile fingers weaved in and around each other, but her mind was elsewhere. She remembered gathering chestnuts last fall, and the man who had offered to buy her basket.

“But, my lord! This is gold.”

“I am no one’s lord,” said the man. “And the real gold is what you carry.”

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The Artist Who Didn’t Like Silhouettes #writephoto

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The Artist Who Didn’t Like Silhouettes (166 Words)

It was a shame, because she specialized in them. She knew how to find that symmetry, that poise, that would bring out the art in any figure. But she told me one time when I was with her in her studio, that she didn’t like them. At the time she was working on the silhouette of a bird poised on a winter branch, a jagged, India-ink blackness over gray Bristol.

“But why not?” I said. “They’re wonderful.”

“Well,” she said. “I’ve been thinking. You know what they say about looking at things in black and white.”

“Maybe…”

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Goblin Tree

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Goblin Tree (158 Words)

Once, a goblin stole whatever he could from a human village, jewels, apples, and buttons. He was lean-limbed with fierce gold eyes, but his hands, though slender, were like talons.

His one weakness was a human woman. When their love became known, the village threatened her if he did not surrender himself. He surrendered. I can’t tell you how many different ways they tried to kill him, but nothing harmed him. So they buried him alive. Some say these gnarly roots evoke the goblin’s reaching hands, clawing for escape.

“Ugh. Mommy.”

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A Bad Baby Bird

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A Bad Baby Bird

This was not a normal baby bird. For one thing, it was evil. It stared at Susan with evil beady black eyes, its head undulating and its mouth open wide. There was something malevolent in the way that baby bird kept its mouth wide open. Susan sat very still as the baby bird sat on her lap. She could feel its eyes boring into her, but she was watching Tommy.

Tommy was mixing dog and baby food into Tupperware.

“What’s that for?” asked Susan.

“Food,” said Tommy. “Baby birds can eat moist food. It’ll need hot water to make it soft.”

“Can’t you just give it a worm or something?”

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